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Hey, Everyone! I wanted to specifically share this photo with you. It has quickly jumped up into my favorite photos ever taken! I have a very distinguished style when it comes to using light and when it gets dark outside, the light becomes less ideal but a lot of couples love the dreamy-ness of dusk portraits and city lights. I just so happened to have missed focus on my couple (hand to forehead, this happens more often than I’d like) but it’s a great way for you to see where that dreamy light actually came from. I used a passing car as my backlight! As much as I would like to say that I came to this location with the idea of using a car to make some magic, I didn’t. I didn’t know what I wanted when my couple said they wanted to use this spot. And that’s OK! I am a very laidback photographer and a huge roamer! What I mean by a roamer is that I have maybe one or two spots I know I want to hit during a session, but the rest… I play by ear. I love to wander onto new locations and hidden treasures. This is how I keep my work constantly improving and never repeating itself.

I am going to walk you through my quick little thought process when I started at this location. My first thought was just to get a picture of the whole scene… it wasn’t bad, but I thought instantly that I’d have to edit out a few things, the traffic was kind of busy, and it was getting dark QUICK! BUT! Do you see that? Do you see that light in this picture beside by Colt’s head!? THAT right there is what got my wheels turning to use the cars to my advantage. I knew I wanted a closer crop on my couple so I threw on my 85mm and of course, the cars chilled out!!! (Hand to forehead, again!) So I waited… and waited… and NO CARS! I did snag some other safe photos during this time. Then, I switched back to my 35mm to get the whole scene… and the cars came back! HAH! It just wasn’t meant to be. So I kept my 35mm on and got on that platform with the couple to use the car lights as I had originally wanted. Which, I am so glad I did! This photo came out so intimate and dreamy!  (Side thought: As I am editing these photos I wish I had a tripod and used those cars to make light trails with them kissing in the middle! AH! It would have been beautiful! Missed opportunity, but it’s OK! NEXT TIME!)

I am constantly looking to find something “natural” to create my signature glow. Below I posted a few before and afters of how this photo came out. If you have an editing style you will start to photograph according to it. I know I edit light and airy. So I knew that the car beams may not be powerful in my SOOC photo but once I get it on my computer they would POP! I photographed the photo a little darker than I normally do but thank goodness for RAW. I make “oops” sometimes when I am rushed by the falling sun and need to get THE shot. Especially when a couple takes me to a specific location I always feel like I need to exceed their expectations.

35mm 1/160 f 1.4 ISO 320


Thanks for reading! I hope I helped and inspired you in some way!!


Photography Tip | Cincinnati Engagement Session